Coaches look for efficiency on offense.
The Chargers took that statistic to a ridiculous level in a 49-6 rout at Bolivar on Friday night. Covington ran 17 plays from scrimmage in the first half and scored 42 points. That’s 1.75 points per minute or, even crazier, 2.47 points per play.
The win clinches the Region 7-3A championship that has eluded the Chargers (6-1 overall, 4-0 Region 7-3A) for the past three seasons. With it comes home field advantage throughout next month’s playoffs.
“We get to play at home all the way to Chattanooga (site of state title game),” said Covington head coach J.R. Kirby. “The kids have earned it.”
Jamarion Dowell was the efficiency leader. He touched the ball four times, gained 91 yards and scored three touchdowns, with the last one a darting 67-yard run that capped a 98-yard drive. It was set up by a fourth-and-goal stand by the Covington defense.
Covington defensive coordinator John Katrosh had warned pregame that the Tigers (1-7, 0-4) had a quarterback who was a double threat. Junior Carson Howell, 5’7”, if that, was the Bolivar offense. He completed 7 of 24 passing attempts for 105 yards with an interception by Alin Franklin. Howell accounted for almost all of Bolivar’s 129 rushing yards despite losing a fumble to David Harrison.
The Chargers gained 266 rushing yards on 33 attempts.
Skylan Smith also had four touches for 75 yards and a score. Quarterback Braden Gover completed 3 of 5 passes for 32 yards and rushed four times for nine yards and a touchdown. A.C. Mason-Young picked up 19 yards on one try.
The “young guys,” as Kirby calls his JV and second unit players, got on the scoreboard against a starting defense for the first time this season in the second half. Azarion Harris bulled his way into the end zone and gained 48 yards on 12 carries. Drake Anderson added 33 yards on four carries.
“We played well in all phases of the game, particularly on defense for not having seen a spread offense,” said Kirby. “For the fourth time this year, we blocked a punt and for the second straight week, Mason picked it up and scored from 17 yards out. Bolivar got that late touchdown against the second team, but the varsity has allowed just six points in the second half since the Munford game.”
Covington travels to 5A Dyer County this Friday to face off against the Choctaws in anon-region game.
“This is the final road game,” Kirby said. “We want to get through this week and next, against a powerful 4A Haywood team, healthy and ready for a playoff run.”